BLAISE PASCAL: The Genius of His Thought by Roger Hazelton

BLAISE PASCAL: The Genius of His Thought

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Hazelton's Pascal is not a biography but a wholistic study of the work of the 17th-century Frenchman who, in the 39 years of his life, achieved immortality as scientist, humanist, writer, philosopher and believer. As the unifying element of his work, the author has chosen a theme from the latter aspect of Pascal's thought -- man in relation to the infinite. Hazelton traces his development through the various degrees of abstraction, beginning with the physical sciences (mechanical engineering, experimental physics, etc.). Next, he describes Pascal's achievement as a humanist. And, finally, accepting his subject's conviction that infinity and humanity are indissolubly linked and mutually complementary, he analyzes Pascal as believer. The two concluding chapters -- on Pascal as artist and philosopher -- are concerned chiefly with method and approach. The value of Hazelton's contribution lies not only in the originality of his interpretation, but in the fact that he makes available an intelligent synthesis of a work which has hitherto been left almost entirely to specialists. This is, in fact, the only readable introduction to Pascal in English today. Highly recommended to students of theology and literature; indispensable for libraries at the university level.

Pub Date: March 18th, 1974
Publisher: Westminster